A Letter from Hannah

October 23, 2017
A Letter from Hannah

To a suffering woman,

I remember once also feeling unable to talk to anyone about my painful secret, but spending hours reading on the internet about domestic violence. I wondered, “Is this really abuse?”, and then, “Can an abuser really change?”, and eventually “What would happen if I left?” I hope you will be able to relate to my story and take encouragement from it.

From the outside, it probably looked like I had it all. A husband, two children, a good career, and a big, beautiful house.

I hid the bruises on my arm by wearing a cardigan sweater in the summer.  I lied to myself and others; I told an ER doctor that I had tripped and fallen and cut open my lip.I would like to say that I decided to leave at the point I arrived in the ER, but I didn’t. I told myself it was an accident.

I started to believe the lie that he was going to change.  He was taking medication for bi-polar disorder. He said he had just forgotten his meds and it wouldn’t happen again.  But the frightening, angry outbursts would happen again and again. After ten years, I finally stuck with the decision to leave. I was still frightened, but now about the future.  I was afraid of being alone, broke, and even more miserable.

Take heart in the fact that things can get better with time. I cherish moments with my kids and they are so much happier now.  I’ve built a great support system, including fellow single mom friends that I can relate to.  I feared judgment by others but as I shared my secret with select people, I found they were shocked but often so sympathetic and eager to help.  You, too, are not as alone as you may think. Support does exist. I hope you will reach out to others and find a better future also.

Wishing you peace,


I am a survivor of domestic violence.

“I didn’t know that I was being abused...

I am a survivor of domestic violence.

“I didn’t know that I was being abused because my definition of abuse looked different. My husband pushed me, but most of my suffering was verbal and psychological. I left my husband to protect our young daughter. Almost immediately I felt the weight of his oppression begin to lift. I could see a difference in my daughter as well. Then he broke into my home and assaulted me in-front of her.

I sought help and was led to Safe Harbor. My daughter and I are in counseling now. I am sorting out the mess that abuse has caused. I am finding my voice and seeking opportunities to grow and better my life as well as my daughter's. She will gauge her self-worth from my own self-worth. I must show her that she deserves the best, by expecting the best for myself.

Many years I suffered in silence. By telling my story and being honest with friends and family, I am taking control of my life again.”

- Beth



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